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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 97886 Find in a Library
Title: Management - Labor's Most Effective Organizer (From Police Management Today, P 162-170, 1985, James J Fyfe, ed. - See NCJ-97876)
Author(s): W H Sirene
Date Published: 1985
Page Count: 9
Sponsoring Agency: International City/County Management Assoc
Washington, DC 20002
Sale Source: International City/County Management Assoc
777 North Capitol Street, NE
Washington, DC 20002
United States of America
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: A case study is the basis for an analysis of warning signals which lead police employees to unionize and seek organized labor's influence to force city officials to improve police pay and benefits.
Abstract: The case study concerns a community with a population of 50,000 and a police force of 50. Dissatisfaction with a new chief and lack of planning and training set the stage for unionization activities. When officers elected the Police Benevolent Association (PBA) over the Teamsters, management was pleased and thought the PBA would be easier to intimidate. Negotiations over three contracts were characterized by bitter fights, and the police department became one of the lowest paid forces in the area. When the contract was about to expire, officers supporting the Teamsters obtained enough signatures to force another election. The Teamsters won hands down, to the amazement of management. This study reveals several common reasons why police officers unionize and why they eventually become affiliated with organized labor. Salary is not generally recognized as a major cause for forming employee organizations, but it becomes an employee dissatisfier if wages and benefits received are not comparable to others in the area. Adequate compensation must be accompanied by a general concern for employees' welfare. This can be illustrated by periodic wage reviews to keep wages in line with the cost of living. Pent-up employee dissatisfaction with unfair personnel policies may combine around a single instance and erupt in a strike. This could be avoided if one individual was designated as having responsibility for personnel relations. Other conditions that intensify discontent are lack of a grievance procedure, poor working conditions, lack of identity and recognition, poor administrative leadership, and inadequate internal communications. When management fails to negotiate in good faith with a local independent police assocation, they are inviting subsequent affiliation with organized labor. Seven footnotes are included.
Index Term(s): Case studies; Employer-employee relations; Police unions; Public administration
Note: *This document is currently unavailable from NCJRS. Previously published in FBI Law Enforcement, (January 1981).
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